Top Three Certifications for an Ethical Hacker

The data breach is a very serious issue nowadays. So, the job market of Ethical hacking is a wide playing field for a cybersecurity professional. Here, we are going to discuss the top three certifications to get to become an ethical hacker. I don’t really want to talk about all of the certifications that there are out there that you can get to become an ethical hacker or a pentester.  I just wanted to go over my top three choices that are basically the most employable certifications out there. Which can essentially help you get a job. There are hundreds if not thousands of courses out there that you can do that can help you learn different techniques. But these certifications that you pay for will definitely help you get a job. 

In fact, some of them are actually required to get a job. So, even if you have a degree or lots of experience people are still looking for these three certifications across different pen testing or ethical hacker jobs right now. Now this list is essentially my favorite and also most feasible three out of the mix of certifications that you have to get as part of getting a job in cybersecurity.


You can guess at least what one of them is before I even get into it.  This is essentially just to help you get that job once you have a degree or a little bit of experience and you want to get a junior pen tester role.  Even if you're halfway through a career and you want to jump into that mid to senior pen-tester role these certifications are useful for you as well.

Now the job search  I did to find out which certifications are going to be the best was done on linked-in. The search terms I  used were ethical hacker, penetration tester,  junior pentester, and cybersecurity analyst. Now I know analyst is more of a blue team role but I wanted to throw it in the mix there. Just to see what certifications that one would require to get jobs in the cybersecurity field.


Certification no.1: eJPT

Now I've put these three certifications in order of what time in career one should get them. The reason I've put them in this order is that it's from what I can see a learning path to become an ethical hacker or a junior pentester. So, this is sort of like a pathway to an ethical hacker. The first certification on the list the first one you should get is the eJPT. Now the reason I mentioned this one at the beginning is that it goes over a bunch of different technologies without a huge price tag and will sort of getting you in the mindset of a pentester. it covers things like TCP IP routing and land protocols that will give you a pretty good understanding of network concepts. On the website it says you will get an essential penetration testing process, methodology a basic vulnerability assessment of networks, basic vulnerability assessment of web applications, exploitation with Metasploit. It's what we want simple web application manual exploitation, basic information gathering, and reconnaissance, simple scanning and profiling of the target. I would completely agree with Metasploitwhat it's saying on the website. I know someone who took to recently who just did this certification and then went on to do an Oscp. He was saying that it was such a great preparation for him to go and then do the Oscp that he doesn't think he could have actually completed the OSCP without having done this first. So, if that's any indication of how valuable this certification is I mean the money's there. This certification is only two hundred dollars. Which for the value you get out of it I think is actually pretty damn good.

Certification no.2: OSWE

Second, you should get it because once you've learned all of these practices doing bug bounties are going to be an absolute breeze. With the majority of bug bounties being web application pen testing essentially. Where you're trying to find bugs on web apps and that is definitely the majority of bug bounties out there, to be honest. You'll just be really well aligned to sort of push yourself into the bug bounty world and do some self-learning and possibly make some money on the side. While already having these two amazing certifications. Now with these certifications, you can apply to jobs like being a web application pentester. You can just do bug bounties in your spare time or full-time if you really want.

Certification no.3: OSCP

Here, we are on the pathway to my final certification recommendation which is of course the OSCP. Now I don't need to rave on and on about the OSCP I think. It is an extremely hard certification for a beginner but it does get jobs. There was a guy I was talking to recently who was applying for all of these jobs out there day after day. Lots and lots of jobs. He didn't have the OSCP yet. He said I'm studying for it. He didn't get a reply. He just he was getting nowhere. One day he finishes the OSCP within six hours of applying and saying he had an OSCP. He was asked to come into an interview. Six hours! Now that is just awesome. There was another guy I knew who was again applying for jobs he had work experience in IT and in networking. Applying for jobs as a pentester. He said he had the skills and as per his experience he did have the skills. But he didn't have an OSCP. He applied a lot but got nowhere. He went in for lots of interviews. But it got him nowhere. After he got his OSCP within a couple of weeks he had himself a job. Just like that now on the OSCP website course notes it says, the competencies you will gain are using information gathering techniques to identify and enumerate targets running various operating systems and services, writing basic scripts and tools to aid in the penetration testing process, analyzing correcting modifying cross-compiling and porting public exploit code, conducting remote local privilege escalation and client-side attacks, and the list goes on and on. It's essentially an extension to the OSWE with a bit more in there. It's got some systems pen testing in there as well. The main reason that this certification is held so highly with different recruiters and IT companies out there as well as different organizations who are looking for people with an OSCP is that it is difficult. The reason people want you is because it is hard and they know it's hard. It's just a really good certification to get if you want to be a pen tester or an ethical hacker. It's absolutely on the top of my list. It's number one or I guess number three in this because I did it backward in order of how you should do it.

Also just get out there guys you need to jump on these certifications to get these jobs I know experience is an absolute king in the industry right now. And it's sort of knocking everyone about with what they should and shouldn't do but if you stay in line with the certifications that you need then you will progress further and quickly with these certifications. I'm not saying you're going to get a job with just these certifications instead of doing university although it's definitely possible. But if you did have a degree and these certifications I will almost guarantee that you will get a job within six months.

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